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Old 01-13-09, 04:09 PM   #1
yrrej
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One leg spinning on a trainer?

Hi,

I am a 70 year old rascal that is trying to get comfortable on my
Sequoia Comp that I bought in Nov 08.

I bought a Kirk Kinetic to try to toughen up during the winter.

I have read (somewhere) that one legged pedaling will help
develop spinning skills.

I have also installed clipless pedals after a series of unfortunate
problems disengaging from toe clips

I am having problems with smoothly pedaling with one leg on
the trainer.

Part of the problem is where to put the other leg ( currently on
the back of the trainer).

I seem to have a lot of trouble transitioning from pulling the
pedal up to pushing the pedal down. The wheel gets ahead of
the pedal and I have a tendency to bang the chain when I
transition to the downward stroke...

Any hints on how to smooth out the process?

Thanks,

Jerry
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Old 01-13-09, 06:18 PM   #2
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I'm not a fan of one-legged drills. Pedaling with one leg is too removed from normal cycling form. If you want to develop spinning skill learn to do it with both feet on the pedals. But that's just my opinion.
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Old 01-13-09, 06:47 PM   #3
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Pendergast, I'm coming to the same conclusion from my experience with one-legged drills for my tri training. I can easily tell when I'm using good form with both legs, but it is just an absolute struggle to do it correctly with just one leg. When I get to that part of my workout (a free online 36 week Ironman program from Trifuel) I just spin for the same amount of time, using both legs.

yrrej, my only suggestion is to use a higher gear, which is a bit counterintuitive. You'll be able to "catch up" to the inertia of the wheel more easily. Then you can eventually get it to work in a lower gear.
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Old 01-14-09, 07:26 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yrrej View Post
Part of the problem is where to put the other leg ( currently on
the back of the trainer).
I just keep my other leg hanging to the side, held just clear of the spinning pedal.

Quote:
Originally Posted by yrrej View Post
I seem to have a lot of trouble transitioning from pulling the
pedal up to pushing the pedal down. The wheel gets ahead of
the pedal and I have a tendency to bang the chain when I
transition to the downward stroke...
When you come to the top of the stroke, focus on driving the knee up and forward towards the handlebar.


One drill for working on cadence that I like doing is called "Spin Ups". After warming up, you gradually increase your cadence over a period of 30 seconds, until you are pedalling as fast as you possibly can with good form (no bouncing). Hold this cadence as long as you can. Recovery interval is 5 minutes; repeat until you notice a drop in the cadence you can maintain with good form. Use an easy gear for these.
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Old 01-14-09, 08:39 AM   #5
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put the off leg slightly behind you placed on the trainer for support. it takes severly attempts befor you feel somewhat comfortable. you really have to focus on the stroke to keep it smooth. later.
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Old 01-14-09, 06:24 PM   #6
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Search this forum (Training & Nutrition) for "one legged pedaling" (with the quotes).

Wedge your lazy foot in the frame triangle. It's hard because you presently have neither the musculature nor the nerve/muscle coordination to be able to do it. But developing those things is necessary to be able to pedal efficiently. That's the reason to do those drills. Yes it hurts, yes it's difficult.

Hints: try not not accelerate the pedal during the downstroke. Try to keep a steady speed. At the bottom of the stroke, pull back on the pedal like you're scraping mud off your shoe. On the backstroke you just have to do it, but it's short. At the top of the stroke, push forward like you're kicking a dog off your front wheel. More hints in the other posts you'll find.

It's not removed from "normal pedaling." In fact the very best training is to use PowerCranks in which each crank arm is on a separate ratchet. In effect you would be constantly doing one legged pedaling with both legs. Expensive, though. Pretty much only pros use them.
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Old 01-14-09, 07:18 PM   #7
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In fact the very best training is to use PowerCranks in which each crank arm is on a separate ratchet. In effect you would be constantly doing one legged pedaling with both legs. Expensive, though. Pretty much only pros use them.
That's the difference though. Powercranks maintain normal balance, weight shifts, & muscle firing sequence and teach you to co-ordinate both legs.
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Old 01-15-09, 05:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bh357 View Post
I just keep my other leg hanging to the side, held just clear of the spinning pedal.



When you come to the top of the stroke, focus on driving the knee up and forward towards the handlebar.


One drill for working on cadence that I like doing is called "Spin Ups". After warming up, you gradually increase your cadence over a period of 30 seconds, until you are pedalling as fast as you possibly can with good form (no bouncing). Hold this cadence as long as you can. Recovery interval is 5 minutes; repeat until you notice a drop in the cadence you can maintain with good form. Use an easy gear for these.
I know that coach troy does a similar drill, but it is 40 seconds long with a step up in cadence each ten seconds, 90...100...110....all out. 5 minutes rest seems a little excessive, not even sure you can merit that with only a 30 second cadence drill...?!?
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Old 01-16-09, 09:25 PM   #9
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It took me a couple of sessions (ie a couple of weeks) to be able to do one-leggeds well continuously. The same thing happened with spin-ups. Just keep trying!

(Someone told me today to "consciously engage the hip flexors" on the upstroke...)
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